There is a noticeable difference in atmosphere at this year’s San Diego Comic Con, because the ongoing WGA and SAG-AFTRA strike had a dramatic impact on the show.
Nevertheless, passionate attendees did not let that stop them from attending San Diego Comic Con as there was something to do for everyone at the event. From after parties to meetups with film and television properties, there was something to suit everyone’s interests. In fact, there were many activations that I attended a short time before they opened to the public, including One of the most popular activations at San Diego Comic Con, AMC’s Immortal Universe, as many convention goers named this as their favorite activation. Here are just a few that I thought stood out to me out of all of them.
The party that was organized by XLE Productions was an all-out celebration of the 90’s. It was more than just the music, it was the aesthetics, presentation, and production that brought me back to the Saturday nights I spent watching Nickelodeon in the mid 90’s. Everything was included, even the orange couch. A spokesperson for the venue told us that 90’s nostalgia is a huge hit among millennials, and that they wanted to introduce it to the Gen Z audience born after 2000 who have never experienced this decade before.
From the same company, they also wanted to take advantage of the Barbie movie, which premiered just this week, and tap into the market. The Malibu Daydream Experience brought out the best in the Barbie brand and there were also photo sections where everyone could act out their scene and have fun as they did so. In addition, it is worth mentioning that this part was not connected to the Mattel brand in any way.
As part of San Diego Comic Con, Fandom usually hosts a party, but this year marked the brand’s first themed activation. To drive awareness around the dangers of youth vaping, Fandom created a ten foot metal monster inspired by classic Kaiju movies like Godzilla vs. The Smog Monster. Additionally, attendees were able to participate in various augmented reality experiences that brought the monster to life. Through engaging content from influencers, those watching the weekend’s events from home can also engage with the “Metallic Monster.” Also to note, there were local food businesses that were also there and it gave them a boost in sales and social media awareness.
Most people at Comic Con were unaware of this exhibit until they saw it, but Cozi TV celebrated 30 years of Roseanne during San Diego Comic-Con this year with The Lanford Lunch Box. In the first season of Roseanne, the diner from the series was introduced as the place where Roseanne and her sister Jackie worked as waitresses. Furthermore, over there, there was also a mini-carnival with a lot of games and puzzles to do, as well as a lot more activities.
On Friday at the San Diego Comic-Con, WWE had its annual panel. During this, Chelsea Green “crashed” the WWE-Mattel panel and got in on the action.
It was during the time when Mick Foley, Seth Rollins, and Johnny Gargano were out on stage that Green interrupted Rollins while he was chatting about his own action figure that he interrupted Rollins. Eventually, she joined the panel for the remainder of the discussion, and Mick Foley expressed his praise for her role as one of WWE’s current champions for her accomplishments.
Furthermore, as part of the panel, Rollins discussed his feelings as the new World Heavyweight Champion as well as how he wants that title to be viewed similarly to the WWE Championship in terms of positioning. Mattel also revealed its new lineup of WWE action figures that will be released in the coming months into next year.
With its Funkoville area at this year’s San Diego Comic Con, Funko has returned bigger than ever with its biggest booth of all time.
I have never seen an exhibit as large and elaborate as this one at Comic Con. Each booth is decorated in pastel colors and old-fashioned signage in order to mimic the appearance of small shops in a small town, each of which has its own brand and speciality. Funko’s booth has a lot of stuff to sell. As well as the Blockbuster, there are several other amenities within the mall, including a donut shop, a bowling alley, a Loungefly-themed boutique, and a Mondo gas station as well.
The Blockbuster booth, which Funko and Loungefly developed for the event, was to tap into 90’s nostalgia to appeal to the millennials and Gen Z generation that is interested in the ’90’s.
“We like to be on the pop culture edge, but also really bring that ‘oh my gosh, I remember when I was a kid and that makes me so happy’ feeling from everyone and I would say that Loungefly has always been a bit of a nostalgic company and Funko is really on the edge of pop culture,” said Derrick Baca, SVPs of Creative, Innovation & Vision at Loungefly.
Getting around the booths is pretty straightforward as far as how to navigate them. As you enter the space, you’ll find a helpful information booth on your righthand side, and the minibooth signs will be visible as you walk in. Follow the employee to the line at that shop. You’ll get a paper menu with every item on sale in that booth as you wait in line (don’t worry, they must move fast when we were there!).
My time at the booth also included making my own Funko Pop with Pop Yourself. With Pop Yourself, you can make Pop replicas of yourself, friends, and loved ones with the added benefit of customizing them to reflect your passions and fandoms. Fans are able to immerse themselves in the fandoms and magical worlds they love through unlimited birthday, graduation, wedding, etc. offerings.
“We want to make sure that the fans always have an experience with us and its been an evolution to make sure that is something that we can do for anybody,” said Johanna Gepford, SVP Direct to Consumer at Funko.
The launch is in celebration of Funko’s 25th anniversary and serves as a huge step forward for the company, as the Pop! Yourself technology accentuates Funko’s efforts to lead innovation in the consumer products market. Consumers can use Pop! Yourself in Q3 2023 via Funko.com and in-person at the Funko Hollywood + Funko Everett locations. This mass market launch and accessibility to consumers makes collecting more personal and FUN.
In collaboration with Den of Geek Magazine, Funko Games, a leading publisher of tabletop games and the home of acclaimed studio Prospero Hall, hosted Rooftop Game Night at San Diego Comic-Con as part of the company’s partnership with the Diamond Building. There was a wide variety of popular pop culture franchises and classic original games available at this event, making it a must-attend for tabletop game enthusiasts. In addition to sampling the brand’s exclusive IPA, attendees had a chance to see the new offerings for the first time.
Additionally, Funko Games hoped to introduce its games to new audiences with this rooftop. There was a lot of excitement in the air as I witnessed the attendees playing the tabletop games for the first time in the room.
“We have games for many types of players. For casual players, and hardcore players. Ultimately we have to deliver a compelling and fun experience that lives up to the expectations of players and fans,” said Chuck Blevens, director of marketing.
As part of AMC Networks’ return to Comic-Con, AMC Networks will present a new Anne Rice Immortal Universe experience and activation at the Hilton San Diego Gaslamp Quarter Hotel’s terrace (401 K Street). The activation was previewed by us at Comic Con, where we were given the opportunity to preview it in advance.
As part of the event, guests were invited to take a tour along “The Street of Immortality,” which is an immersive experience inspired by New Orleans, with several opportunities to capture photos and videos along the way. In addition to this, attendees recognized some of the iconic locations from Interview with the Vampire (such as Hotel Iberville and Nawlins Records), and they also immersed themselves in Anne Rice’s universe, made up of characters drawn from Interview with the Vampire and Mayfair Witches.
There was also a walking street tour where attendees were able to collect exclusive souvenirs as well as limited-edition premiums, such as “The Elixir of Immortality”, a mocktail prepared by POM Wonderful. Aside from that, fans can expect some surprise and delight moments inspired by the universe, and costumes are encouraged.
With its activation, AMC is doubling down on the Immortal Universe as Interview With The Vampire’s first season had a positive reception. The fanbase of the series continues to grow as the network giant would look into tapping into this audience while the iron is hot.
The event is free and for all ages, and open Thursday, July 20, Friday, July 21 and Saturday, July 22 from 11am – 7pm.
Fans are back at cons, and they’re back in a big way! The fact that attendance at WonderCon returned to normal on March 24 – 26, 2023, in Anaheim, CA, was encouraging, as it brought the event back to normal following a down year in 2022. On Friday, there was a reasonable amount of attendance, which is typical for this Con, but on Saturday it became jam-packed with attendees and cosplayers alike.
It was easy to navigate the crowds at WonderCon 2023 on Friday, as long as your attention wasn’t distracted by all the colorful, creative pop culture conventions around you. While wandering the convention center, looking for interesting people to chat with, we stopped and talked with a few people.
Cosplayer @stephanie_robledo_ arrived at Wonder Con in Star Wars inspired gear on full display. She has attended Wonder Con for years and was thrilled to see it back in full force this year along with meeting new friends.
“I just love the community. You do meet new friends all the time, everyone cheering you up like, ‘Oh my God, that’s such a great costume.’ Like, I just love everything about it. The creativity of just going out of your comfort zone,” she said, further adding that she is looking forward to Star Wars Celebration.
Stephanie is not alone with the enjoyment of the show. Cosplayers pictured below @ci_cosplay and @dromhunter shared the same sentiment about the convention and the amount of work that goes into crafting the perfect costume is fun while also a challenge to completion. As far as advice, the two said that fans should go and have fun.
“Matter of such a simple little cosplay is just come and have fun and we’re all here to make friends,” said Ciri. “We’re all here to have fun and It’s an amazing experience to have,” said Yennefer.
Although the weather was in the chill factor, this did not stop anyone from attending the show. Compared to the juggernaut of San Diego Comic Con, many people I’ve spoke with like the less-congested show due to the swiftness of walking from one booth to another.
Each year Comic Con attracts the best cosplayers around and despite the impact of a waning pandemic, this year absolutely did not disappoint.
This year was my first Comic Con experience ever and I got to experience in my hometown of New York. As a kid I always wanted to witness the magic of Comic Con in person but over the years, I just hadn’t had the chance. One thing I had learned in recent years is that the cosplayers here at pretty much the best you’ll ever see and when I finally got to the Javits center and witnessed it all in person, I was just stuck in a state of awe for about a half hour. Seeing a lot of my favorite comic book and video characters be brought rather realistically to life was incredible. Here are some of my favorite shots of the cosplayers from over the weekend.
Ever wonder what David Harbour’s life was like before Stranger Things? It may not be what you would’ve expected.
Success as an actor is often hard to define. Sometimes critical acclaim or commercial profitability are the metrics used to define success. However, there’s another lesser attained category that only a few actors ever get the honor of being – a cult classic. Thanks to Stranger Things, David Harbour has certainly hit that mark. He hasn’t always been the household name he is today and chances are most fans wouldn’t have known his life prior to the culture defining Netflix series. But judging from the response at New York Comic Con this year, they certainly wanted to know more and David was happy to share about his life prior to the show.
For starters, he grew up in New York in the East Village and stayed there for much of his life as he pursued a career as an actor. However, he wasn’t exactly dominating the big or small screen in any capacity. His appearances were mostly confined to recurring roles on short lived TV series and doing off Broadway plays. It got to the point where he was started to worry about where next month’s rent would come from. He was on a tv series that had just shot its first season and he needed it to get renewed to ensure he’d be fine financially for the coming months. He waited by the phone and hoped to get the good news, but when the phone rang, it didn’t go the way he wanted.
As you can imagine, he was saddened by the news, but it was relatively short lived. Not too long after, he got a call to audition for a certain Netflix show – Stranger Things. After auditioning though, he wasn’t exactly encouraged. He figured at first that someone with a better track record or name would get selected as it was a fairly large role and he was right. Someone else did get selected but ended up rejecting the role. Who passed up on that opportunity, we may never know, but the rest, as they say is history.
It was really great getting this story and many others like it from David and other cult classics at Comic Con. Be sure to check out the other coverage here on the Knockturnal for more interesting stories like this.
Exclusive: Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez Talks Somos Arte, La Borinqueña & Receiving The 2019 Bob Clampett Humanitarian Award At The Comic-Con Eisner Awards
For over twenty years, Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez has delivered exemplary graphic designs and artistic visions to globally-renowned clients — as a means to create awareness of issues that trouble the Latinx community.
A ton of trailers are shown for the first time every year at San Diego Comic Con. This year’s con was no different. In order to make sense of the noise, we’ve compiled a list featuring only the biggest reveal trailers to come out of SDCC 2016. From film to television, Marvel to DC, these are the first-looks at some of the next couple years’ biggest entertainment franchises. There was plenty more that excited us coming out of SDCC including the new Sherlock trailer and that leaked footage of Spiderman, but everything below is brand-spanking new.
The trailer that gathered the most attention coming out of this year’s convention, Wonder Woman is quite the treat. Surely it has not taken this long (nearly ten years since Iron Man and The Dark Knight kicked off the comic book movie boom) for one of the most iconic American super heroes to get her own movie? Laments about Hollywood’s neglect of female and heroes of color aside, Gal Gadot kicks ass in this WWII era trailer, which looks to essentially be the first Captain America film but (hopefully) way way better.
Speaking of DC, it is hard to get legitimately stoked for anything in that cinematic universe following Man of Steel and Batman V. Superman. But this… this is awesome. Ezra Miller is the true star of this trailer as a witty Barry Allen that could completely change the grim tone that has been dragging these movies down to the depths where Aquaman resides. P.S. “Icky Thump” is my favorite White Stripes song.
Justice League takes a good position in the middle ground between comical and oh-my-god-the-world-is-on-fire-we-need-to-save-it, everyone get their serious masks on! Lego Batman doesn’t even try to take itself seriously, and that’s why we love it. We all know Will Arnett is doing fantastic voice work in this season of Bojack Horseman, so between him and the dream team that brought us The Lego Movie, this one is sure to be a delight. At very least it’s sure to be better than the last time we saw Batman and Robin on the big screen.
Kong: Skull Island
This one’s been in the works for a while, but we finally got a glance at it at SDCC. Sure, a King Kong origin story may not be the most exciting concept to everyone — I mean who is truly a fan of the King Kong franchise? — but it shows promise. It’s more original than just another reboot. Between Brie Larson, John Goodman and Tom Hiddleston, the cast alone is worth the hype.
Marvel’s Luke Cage
Luke Cage and OBD go together like peanut butter and jelly. I guess what I’m trying to say is there wasn’t too much surprise worthy in the reveal trailer of the next in the line of Marvel’s popular Netflix universe. But much in the same vein of Daredevil and Jessica Jones Cage seems very very good at punching dudes in the face, torso and lower body areas.
Marvel’s Iron Fist
The final member of Marvel’s Defenders, Iron Fist looks to take the same gritty tone as the previous three, but with a possible twist. There isn’t too much to this short teaser, but fans would know that what sets Danny Rand apart is the way his powers manifest. He is not simply stronger or a better fighter, but has mystical chi, which should be a fun production hurdle for Netflix and hopefully result in some awesome sequences.
Star Trek: Discovery
It’s been one hell of a week for Trekies. With the release of Justin Lin’s surprisingly well received Star Trek: Beyond (die-hard fans who hated on the Abrams films seem to be somewhat more pleased) and now this. We still dont’ know much about CBS’s 2017 program and this trailer really only shows of the ship, but it’s safe to say even a taste of a new Star Trek is sure to get fans of the new and old alike ready for a brand new adventure.